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Old 24-03-2010, 07:19   #1
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Transducer Plug is Too Large!

Is anyone else having this problem? I posted this problem on my blog, but thought I see what advice the forum had to offer.
I have Holeaphobia | Bright Eyes

I am installing a Garmin 441s with a thru-hull transducer. The Garmin is mounted on the pedistal guard by a Edson arm mount.

The plan was to run all the wires through the pedistal guard. But once I drilled the hole, I realized that the wire connector of the transducer was too large and long to fit in my nice hole, so I made it bigger, and bigger. It eventually fit but once I connect the two plugs of the transducer, the whole connection aparatus wont fit through my huge hole. I decided to stop drilling and the wire will just have to hang out of the pedistal guard somewhat.

Then comes drilling a hole into the cockpit floor to run the wires through. This was even more scary after my previous hole failure. Well wouldnt you know after drilling a hole almost the size of the rubber foot, the transducer wire still wont fit through it. So I stopped early this time. Should I continue to make the hole bigger, knowing that I need to make the hole larger than needed so that we can epoxy properly? Or should I cut the wire and try to resplice it. Both options seem doomed.


Has anyone else had this problem and how did they solve it?

Looking online the only options I found were

1) Buy a wider tubed pedistal gaurd ($300)
2) Cut and splice the wire (Not recommended by Garmin)
3) Run the wires through the pedistal itself (Not alot of room in there, and dont want to mess up the steering, plus its a lil too late now)
4) Drill huge hole

Thanks for any help.
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Old 24-03-2010, 08:17   #2
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First, some wires should never be cut and spliced and I believe depth sounder transducer cables fall into this category. Follow the manufacturers advise on this.

Regarding the holes, I would be a lot more worried about the hole in the SS pedestal guard than a hole in the fiberglass floor. In your photos the size and location of the hole in the guard looks like it could seriously compromise the strength of the SS post.

A hole in the floor would not be large enough to weaken the floor or sink the boat if it leaked. Just make sure the hole is well sealed and the connector well bedded. If the floor has a plywood or balsa core you want to make sure NO water gets into the wood or you will end up with rotten core.
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Old 24-03-2010, 08:25   #3
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I installed a Garmin GPS a couple years ago with the wiring through the pedestal guard. It did not have the transducer or the large connectors, but did have an external antenna. I installed a terminal board under the cockpit to connect the power, antenna, display, and instruments. If you do cut the cable and go through the pedestal guard, I'd suggest an appropriately sized grommet to protect the cable.

Appears you've already covered the options, good luck.

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Old 24-03-2010, 09:24   #4
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Two years ago I installed a Furuno chartplotter/radar display at the helm requiring that wiring be lead through the Edson pedestal. I was able to follow the old wiring and not have to lead the wiring up the guards themselves, but rather up the center petestal. However I did encounter a problem with the GPS antenna wire end fitting which would have required me to take a different approach. I did not want to drill large holes or to buy a larger pedestal guard so I inquired about cutting the wire and then spliceing. The Furuno folks did not recommend this and the warranty would not be valid for such an action, but after getting through to the engineering department I was instructed on just how to properly splice those small wires. I ended up buying a watertight box(looks like a hockey puck) that contains all the splices and I mounted it on and interior wall of the lazorette. Crimp connectors were used and liquid electrical tape were also applied to seal the connectors. They were very small wires and difficult to deal with, but doable never the less. It has given trouble free service for 2 years now. Knock on wood.
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Old 24-03-2010, 13:53   #5
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The cleanest operation would be to get a bigger pedestal guard. Trying to run that cable thru an Edson pedestal is possible but could be quite difficult. A couple of options that come to mind are 1) See if you can locate a coupling that will fit the same diameter tube that you have for the pedestal guard. If you can cut thru the guard and then put the coupling on. It seems to me that the guard is seriously compromised for strength now so the coupling might make it stronger. You could weld the top half of the coupling and then use a set screw on the bottom half. From there just notch out a space in the guard for the wire. As far as getting the wire thru the deck you are going to need to either remove the end cap or drill a bigger hole. If you drill a bigger hole you can always put a two piece metal pad (similar to the stocks people were put in during colonial times) underneath the base that hold the guard. If what I wrote does not make sense let me know and I will draw something up.
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:07   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie View Post
A couple of options that come to mind are 1) See if you can locate a coupling that will fit the same diameter tube that you have for the pedestal guard. If you can cut thru the guard and then put the coupling on. It seems to me that the guard is seriously compromised for strength now so the coupling might make it stronger. You could weld the top half of the coupling and then use a set screw on the bottom half. From there just notch out a space in the guard for the wire.
yeah I'm not really sure what your explaining. i googled "coupling" but that didnt help. a picture or image might help

Quote:
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As far as getting the wire thru the deck you are going to need to either remove the end cap...
You mean remove the end cap of the transducer wire? the plug that is so big? is that possible cuz that would make the wire fit through!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie View Post
If you drill a bigger hole you can always put a two piece metal pad (similar to the stocks people were put in during colonial times) underneath the base that hold the guard. If what I wrote does not make sense let me know and I will draw something up.
would the metal pad go under the cockpit floor and on top of it? then it would be a visible steel square on the floor. what is the purpose of this, to strengthen the floor?

thanks, a picture would be nice
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:22   #7
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You should always ask for advice before starting up the power tools. That said you should have cut and spliced the wire. The manufacturers do not like there nice factory plugs getting cut off but fact is a proper splice will not degrade performance.
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:30   #8
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yeah, i did do some research and most ppl said to go through the pedistal guard. i thought it would be a simple project, but ofcourse...


i am leaning heavily toward cutting the wires. what is the best way to splice the wire back together? a simply crimp and liquid tape. or can i sauder each wire together?
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Old 24-03-2010, 14:54   #9
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Twist the wires neatly. Flow solder over each. Make sure to get the wires hot (not the solder) so that the hot wire draws in the melting solder. Use shrink tube on each connection.Then shrink tube over the whole bundle.
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Old 24-03-2010, 15:30   #10
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A coupling is basically a larger diamter tube that goes over the ends of two smaller diameter tubes, and is used to connect them together.

As it is, with a hole that size, I also think that you should just cut through the pedestal tubes entirely, and then use a coupling to reconnect the pedestal tubes after you insert the wire in there. You can cut a notch for the wire to exit, but make sure that the edge of the hole is rounded off or covered by a plastic plug else it will eventually cut through the wire the goes through it.
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Old 24-03-2010, 15:57   #11
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Can you remove the plug? Some plugs have a little hole or slot you can stick a screwdriver in and it releases the connectors out of the plastic housing. You could then slide the cable through your hole and snap the pins back into the plug on the other side.

Only thing you have to do is remember which pin slid into which slot of the plug.

That's assuming there's multiple pins in this plug. If it's just a power and ground like a coaxial, it's easy enough to remove the plug and press or crimp on another one.
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Old 24-03-2010, 16:06   #12
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We have the Garmin 555s (Euro version of the US 5xx series) mounted in place of the compass on a Whitlock pedestal. As you would expect the Whitlock has a hollow steel tube to provide the drive from the steering to the arm under the deck. So we just ran the wire straight down tube and the sounder wire up the tube. Been fine for the past 18 months.

Is the Edson pedestal the same?

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Old 24-03-2010, 16:17   #13
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Check before cutting

I wouldn't cut the transducer wire. If you plan to.... check with the manufacture first. Power wires are one thing but signal cables are not meant to be cut and spliced.
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Old 24-03-2010, 17:31   #14
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Chopping several feet out of a Garmin 188c didn't make any difference to the excellent quality of the sounder and the same for the GPS ariel.

I think he is now past the point of no return, someone pass him the wire snips

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Old 24-03-2010, 18:00   #15
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We have diced and sliced Garmin cables on severla occassions and so long as the splices are good, and water tight, there has been no problem, If one is unsure of the splicing skilles, use a circuit block.

FWIW...
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